Saturday, October 1, 2022

Favorite Fall Lessons!

It's the time of year, my very favorite time of the year: fall! We are gearing up for some fun fall art makin' stations and I thought I'd share a bit about that as well as my favorite fall lessons. Many of these links include videos for you to share in your art room. Let's start with this one, a fourth grade favorite: Spooky Starry Nights!

Now I just mentioned art makin' stations which has become my new favorite thing of late! With 30 minute art classes, it's been a fun way for my students to really roll up their sleeves, move around the room and explore several different art makin' activities. You can find out how we did stations for Dot Day here and here and how we are doing it for learning the elements of art LINE here and here...all with videos for you to share in your art room and some videos that are just my tips and tricks for YOU! Here's a blog post about the stations I did on Halloween in my art room here.  I plan to do a week long stations this year so all of my classes can experience the fun. The above pumpkin prints is one I will be adding to the mix. I can't wait!

Monsters are always fun to do during this season and my students LOVE creating them! This lesson, with video, is one I know your students will love!

This one is fun for all ages especially if you want to introduce color mixing, painting, printing and collage. Another lesson with video right here!

Speaking of fall trees, check out this amazing weaving lesson! If you've never woven with your students, I recommend doing a short paper weaving first before diving into this activity. I would give this a go with fourth grade and up if students are new to weaving. Lesson and video here!
Speaking of weaving, my students love this weaving project! All the weaving details can be found in this blog post!

Wanna do printing with your students but don't want to deal with the mess? This leaf printing lesson with just markers and water is sure to be a hit! Here's more.

Speaking of printing...check out this Warhol-inspired sunflower print idea! You'll love it!

How about more monsters? Maybe even ones that glow under black light? All the details and videos can be found here!

Need more monsters? Look no further...than here!
Before Gelli-Plates and the like, we had to make our own sort of gelatin printing plate. 10 years ago, I posted this lesson and it's still one of the most visited on my blog. However, I no longer make the stinky gelatin (not to mention, it's not vegan friendly...I'm not a vegan, but I don't like using it) so you may want to try the same method but with the longer lasting plates. Here's the details.
Another super popular lesson that always yields amazing results is this one! I've done a variation of this type of lesson with students of all ages. More info here. 

Have fun, friends!

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Sunday, September 25, 2022

Creating Line-Making Stations in the Art Room

Hi! I shared earlier this week that all of my students, kindergarten through fourth would be doing line-making stations for 2, 30 minute art classes as an introduction for some and a review for most. I created a short video to walk them through each station and you can check it out here to see what we were up to:

On my Instagram, I got some questions about where I got the line spinner and the other resources I used...I made them! And it was so easy, I thought I'd show you how I did it in case you are interested. So here's the how-to video:

I've already decided what each grade level will do with their collection of line-making papers and I'll share soon. In the meantime, I'm already thinking of ways to expand on this idea of stations. The kids are loving it and it really helps with the wiggles. We have the need to move and this helps. Although a balance of calm days will definitely be sprinkled into the mix! 
Because my students do stations in PE, this concept was something they easily understood. Honestly, the only thing holding me back on doing this sooner! I'm not great with change but this year, I am excited to try all sorts of new things. It's helping me get outta of my burnout that I was experiencing since 2020.
I think that's one of the reasons I slowed down so much on blogging this last year: I just felt stale. I'm feeling excited now...and I think the kids are too.
Anyway, I just wanted to share how we created these centers in case you are interested. I hope you have a relaxing weekend!

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Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Learning Lines with Line Stations

So I've been thinking about a couple of things (which explains the burning smell). Last fall, I tried some "Halloween centers" or stations that my students rotated through. I did this on the day our school was having fall parties and costumes because I knew the kids were going to be excited and I wanted to ride that wave of excitement. I liked it, the kids loved it and I thought I should do it more often. And then I didn't. 

Then I did Dot Day centers and I noticed a couple of things:

* The kids got to experience a wide range of mediums in a short amount of time. One thing I've noticed is that I don't 'have the time' to allow my students to experiment with a lot of art supplies. This allowed me to do that.

* Everyone was very excited and engaged. I mean, it's art, they usually are was electric this time around. And they didn't 'need me' or ask for my approval. 

* We created A LOT. I always feel guilty at the end of the school year that we only have a handful of pieces. We had a ton each that we created!

For that reason, I decided to take the same concept and apply it to the element of art of LINE. I noticed that many of my students, since the pandemic, are lacking in skill: drawing, cutting, you know, the basics. So I decided to do this centers or stations thing with ALL of my students, kindergarten through fourth. Ultimately, we will use these papers as backgrounds for a variety of projects (which will vary by grade) but for now...I'm excited with what we've made. I see so many possibilities with this idea: the elements of art, art history, new mediums, etc. And it has me excited. Which is something I've not felt in a while as the pandemic, as well as the following last two years, brought me severe burnout. 

If you are interested, here is the video I created for my students. I'll be sharing the resources and how I created them in the next couple days. So stay tuned! 

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Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Assembling our Dots from our Dot Day Activities

In my last blog post, I shared that my students were spending a couple of days rotating between four different art makin' stations. We spent two days doing that and ended up with a TON of dots! We are now assembling our dots in a large collage on 18"X24" inch paper. Here is the video I created to walk them through assembling their work:

I love how they all turned out and the kids loved all the different stations they rotated to. You can check out the three videos I made of art makin' centers right here
Of course we had to take Vashti's advice and 'sign it' before calling it complete. I love how each one is so unique and amazing, just like the artists who created them.

When I asked the kids which dot-makin' center they liked the best, they couldn't decide, they really enjoyed them all. I plan to do rotations of art makin' like this in the future, it's so much fun!

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Friday, September 9, 2022

Dot Day Celebration!

Every year, Dot Day creeps up on me and I find myself scrambling for ideas. This year, I decided to create Dot Day Stations for my students to travel to in my 30 minute art class. I had four tables set up with four different activities of dot makin' mayhem and the kids LOVED IT! So much so that I decided to extend the activities to next week! We'll use our dots to create a collage (like what's seen in the image above). Added bonus: the kids are exploring 12 different art making techniques! Here is what we did on the first day:

The following day, students rotated between these stations:

And my older students did these activities:
I did this with my first through fourth grade students and, seriously, they had the best time. Here's a little short of us in action:

If you need more Dot Day ideas, I have plenty of blog posts! You can check them out here...this one has a free downloadable activity sheet! This one has a lot of ideas for kindergarten through fourth! And this one was a HUGE hit last year and could also be done in one day! Okay...seriously...if you google "Cassie Stephens Dot Day" and hit that image search'll have a ton of ideas and videos. Have so much fun!

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